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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

July 21, 2020

Top Story

Study of emissions and virus deaths implicates EPA policy

By Sean Reilly, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:51:52

A new study offers fresh evidence of a connection between dirty air and COVID-19 deaths, while suggesting that a 4-month-old EPA civil enforcement freeze has made the situation worse. The working paper by American University researchers found concentrations of soot and ozone rose in counties with more industrial facilities that report emissions to an EPA pollution database since the agency relaxed enforcement in late March. [ read more … ]

Utilities

Sacramento Utility Sets More Ambitious Climate Goal Than State

By Anthony Robledo, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:51:38

The Sacramento Municipal Utility District has set a more ambitious climate goal than California, aiming to be carbon neutral 15 years before the rest of the state. The utility’s board unanimously adopted a resolution late Thursday to “work towards carbon neutrality by 2030” — a decade sooner than its previous target of 2040. Under state law, all of California’s power must come from carbon neutral sources by 2045. [ read more … ]

Feds file criminal case against ComEd, implicate Mike Madigan

By Jon Seidel, Chicago Sun-Times  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:49:53

A federal subpoena to Madigan’s office shows the feds are interested in the speaker’s relationship with other companies as well. The feds also want wide-ranging records involving Madigan’s top political operatives. Early last year, when federal investigations into public corruption dominated the headlines, a longtime ally of House Speaker Michael Madigan gave a little advice to a ComEd vice president, according to an explosive court document filed Friday.
[ read more … ]

Climate

Morgan Stanley commits to tallying its climate impact

By ZACK COLMAN, Politico  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:53:16

Activists and regulators have begun to shine a spotlight on how banks, insurers and asset managers underwrite projects like pipelines, mines and power plants that contribute to rising temperatures that are fueling more devastating storms, floods and wildfires and that cause billions of dollars in global damages. Those same financial institutions also hold billions in assets that risk becoming “stranded” as nations adopt more aggressive climate policies. [ read more … ]

Cap-and-Trade

Judge scraps Trump’s final cap-and-trade challenge

By Jennifer Hijazi, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:50:35

“Hypothetical or speculative fears cannot support a finding that this state program has more than an incidental effect on foreign affairs,” Shubb wrote in his order. “The United States has failed to show that California’s program impermissibly intrudes on the federal government’s foreign affairs power.” The Trump administration brought the lawsuit last year in an effort to disband the pact, which was created to foster a cross-border market for greenhouse gases in an attempt to cut down on carbon emissions. The Trump administration argued that it violated constitutional rights that govern foreign affairs and treaties. [ read more … ]

Judge tosses Trump challenge to California car-and-trade

By Josh Siegl, Washington Examiner  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:52:16

California’s cap-and-trade system doesn’t conflict with U.S. foreign policy or violate the Constitution, a federal district court judge in California ruled Friday, handing a legal victory to the state on its signature climate program. “Overall, the United States has failed to identify a clear and express foreign policy that directly conflicts with California’s cap-and-trade program,” Judge William Shubb said in his order. [ read more … ]

Utilities

Sacramento Utility Sets More Ambitious Climate Goal Than State

By Anthony Robledo, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:51:38

The Sacramento Municipal Utility District has set a more ambitious climate goal than California, aiming to be carbon neutral 15 years before the rest of the state. The utility’s board unanimously adopted a resolution late Thursday to “work towards carbon neutrality by 2030” — a decade sooner than its previous target of 2040. Under state law, all of California’s power must come from carbon neutral sources by 2045. [ read more … ]

Feds file criminal case against ComEd, implicate Mike Madigan

By Jon Seidel, Chicago Sun-Times  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:49:53

A federal subpoena to Madigan’s office shows the feds are interested in the speaker’s relationship with other companies as well. The feds also want wide-ranging records involving Madigan’s top political operatives. Early last year, when federal investigations into public corruption dominated the headlines, a longtime ally of House Speaker Michael Madigan gave a little advice to a ComEd vice president, according to an explosive court document filed Friday.
[ read more … ]

EVs

Auto Makers Charge Ahead With Electric-Vehicle Plans

By Ben Foldy, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:52:56

“We believe in an all-electric future, and we’re moving aggressively to have vehicles that people want,” GM Chief Executive Mary Barra said on a call with reporters last month. GM said Thursday that it is developing 20 new electric models by 2023 as part of a $20 billion investment in electric and autonomous technologies. That includes reviving Hummer as an all-electric SUV in early 2022 and building a $2.3 billion battery plant with South Korea’sLG Chem Ltd. in northeast Ohio. [ read more … ]

Tesla boom supercharges stock of biggest EV battery firm

By Heejin Kim, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:50:15

The global frenzy for electric vehicles that has seen Tesla Inc.’s stock surge threefold is now juicing the shares of a South Korean supplier that has become the world’s biggest maker of electric vehicle batteries. South Korea’s LG Chem Ltd. has surged more than 62% this year to a valuation of more than $30 billion, becoming the sixth-largest stock on the benchmark Kospi index and leaving Hyundai Motor Co., the nation’s largest automaker, in the dust. [ read more … ]

Commentary

Will Clean Energy Projects Face Troubles That Have Bedeviled Pipelines?

By Jason Bordoff, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2020-07-20 14:49:22

The path forward is not to gut the environmental review process, as President Trump proposed last week. Rather, the government must make the permitting process work better if it is to quickly develop renewable energy projects and improve the grid infrastructure while upholding the nation’s landmark environmental laws. The environmental review process needs to be improved, but not by cutting corners. There is no simple solution, but there are several actions the federal government can take. [ read more … ]

 

Note: News clips provided do not necessarily reflect the views of coalition or its member governors.